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Shamanic Variations


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Greetings all.

I hope this first post finds you all well, happy, and peaceful.  I sought out this forum to engage in some questions to help me figure out this path I have walked for years.  I apologize in advance if this post turns out t be to long, but I want to be rather thorough.  I will keep it as short as possible however.

First off, I am a forty year old man with quite a bit of a "spiritual" education behind me.  I do not mention these things to boast, but to give the reader a bit of insight into my question -which will be presented at the end of my post.  I am a former Buddhist monk (Ch'an Ssu Lun / Pure Land), Anagarika in Theravada Buddhism (Mahabodhi Maitri Mandala), and possess a Bachelors of Theology, and a Doctorate of Divinity,

I am trained in Thai Ruesi tradition, and specialize in "wicha" utilizing what can be found here in America rather than abroad.  I am also very well versed in Traditional American Witchcraft (although I do not practice it anymore).

According to my Father and Grandmother, I am 1/3 Blackfoot Indian, and 1/3 Norwegian. 

Now, I gave all this background to ask this.  How do I know if my path is "shamanic" or not?  I LOVE to spend time alone in the woods.  As I do, I take my shoes off and slowly walk.  The genius loci (spirits of the land) begin to speak to me.  I legitly learn lessons from the trees, water, insects, sun, stars, moon, etc.  Very profound lessons at that.  I enter the forest not knowing this information, and leave with the ability to teach them to others.  I can divine natural objects for others queries, commune with things deep within the forest, feel it's energies intimately, etc.

I also have had many dreams where I was taught Martial Arts.  Full blown martial arts system that I have never knew..  I have astral projected once as well. 

I have an uncanny medical knowledge (without any schooling), and an affinity to strange, weird, and odd objects.  I also can read people's "cloud" as I call it when they are near me,

I have had 2 very serious medical issues that I have survived thus far.  And the Paranormal is a normal part of my life (My family was even on Discovery Channle's "A HAUNTING").

Would you say I am classified as a witch, or shaman?  I don't journey in the traditional sense, but I do interact with other realms via the woods.  On the other hand, I am not cooking up potions, using spells, and celebrating Sabbaths either. 

Any thoughts?

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Greetings -

I'll get right to the point. :) To classify or define one as you suggest would automatically limit one. Simply do what you do. We call ourselves Makers here and say that it is a shamanic tradition because that is what it generally resembles in a broad sense. But to try to fit yourself into a world definition (like "shaman," or "witch") would immediately set boundaries around what is possible for you. Why hold yourself to humanity's general acceptance of what is possible? Be. Act. Expand. Labels mean nothing.

Follow what calls to your deepest heart. You will know who you are without words. The only thing of significance is what you do with it.

Be well.


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You're chosen by the spirits or gods to be a "shaman". Typically in proper traditions (and since you have pretty good blood levels of Blackfoot, I highly suggest you start with speaking to a Blackfoot council/medicine man/etc) when we're chosen by the spirits to go down this path, we suffer greatly. It's called shamanic sickness/spirit illness, and it can be very extreme, often causing the death of people close to us or simply ourselves by trying to run away.

But you need to get vetted by an older, experienced shaman - again, I very much suggest talking to a Blackfoot council. There are lots of resources for blackfoot indigenous people online to gather and share knowledge amongst themselves so it doesn't get lost from the colonization.

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Well Beth said it best, ultimately we are just energy, the makers erase everything, past, culture, blood, we are not our past, we are not our culture and we are not our families. Those things can be in our lives but we don't let any of them define us anymore. If you want to move and do the impossible you do away with it all and stand in your own freedom then your heart can speak without all the attachments. In the end we are not special, not chosen by anyone else or anything else, we are makers because we chose to be one and live as one. it is a personal choice and that choice comes with a responsibility to your own intent what you decide to do with your life, where you want to stand at the end of it and you choose that too.


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